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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Lawyers protest to IGP Bukit Aman Wednesday afternoon

Lawyers and concerned citizens will be congregating at Bukit Aman entrance to protest police highhandedness and arrogance tomorrow at the entrance to Bukit Aman at 12 noon. Below are the details:

Date: 31st March 2010, Wednesday
Time: 12pm
Place: In front of Bukit Aman entrance
Ibu Pejabat Polis Diraja Malaysia
Bukit Aman
Jalan Bukit Aman
50560 Kuala Lumpur.

Location map, Bukit Aman, Jalan Bukit Aman, off Jalan Tanglin, Lake Gardens, Kuala Lumpur

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Below are details of what happened to a lawyer while trying to help his client when he was arrested:

Protest on Weds: Lawyer assaulted & arrested by cops while attempting to defend client against detention w/o trial
Two events coming up. One is Norizan’s Salleh’s latest attempt to get justice, by delivering a memo to the Home Minister on Thursday (April 1st) at Parliament, 11.30am.

The other big one involves once again the maltreatment of lawyers who are just trying to do their job. This particular case involves comrade Amer Hamzah, who helped quite a bit in the aftermath of my own arrest.

He was assaulted and briefly arrested while attempting to defend his client, actor Benjy (that case in the news), who was rearrested under the Dangerous Drugs Act (which like the ISA and EO allows for indefinite detention without trial) immediately after being released by the court – once again displaying a travesty of justice.

I’m going to try my best to attend. When the rest of us find ourselves arrested and intimidated by cops, these lawyers are our first – often only – line of defense. They’ve stood up for us countless times, and we ought to do the same.


Lawyer Amer Hamzah Arshad manhandled and briefly arrested by police outside court

1. On 25th March 2010 Amer Hamzah had obtained his client Khaeryll Benjamin Ibrahim@ Benjy’s release on bail on a charge of drug possesssion at the Jln Duta courts.

2. Near the bail processing counter, about 10 policemen suddenly converged on Amer and his client and ordered the client to go with them. Present were the client’s mother Azean Irdawaty, pupil Sharon Khoo and some family members.

3. The policemen were in plainclothes, and Amer demanded their identity and police card. A police inspector claimed that it was an arrest under the Dangerous Drugs ( Special Preventive Measures) Act i.e: detention without trial.

4. At this point, Amer was assaulted and briefly arrested. Two policemen grabbed Amer and held him back with force. Amer protested his treatment, and repeatedly asked the police not to touch him. Eventually Amer was released as his client was bundled away.

Our Protest

The unlawful, oppressive and arbitrary actions of the police on 25th March are a gross interference with a lawyer carrying out his duty to his client. Amer was discharging his duties in the best traditions of the Malaysian Bar, when he sought explanation from the police as to why his client was being arrested. Despite being surrounded by police, he continued to speak out for his client,as he was bound to do.The aggressive and unlawful response of the police is a reflection of the general arrogance and lack of respect for the rule of law widely displayed by the police force. The matter is aggravated by the fact that Amer’s client was being arrested under an oppressive and unconstitutional preventive detention law. The Malaysian Bar has forcefully and repeatedly called for the repeal of all preventive detention laws. The re-arrest of Benjy immediately after his release by the court is also a flagrant contempt of judicial authority. The Inspector General of Police must:

a) take stern action against the policemen who assaulted Amer Hamzah Arshad and the officer who was in charge of the operation;

b) undertake not to further interfere with lawyers carrying out their duties;

c) immediately stop the unjust practice of re-arresting under preventive detention laws persons released by court;

d) issue a public apology to all concerned;

e) undertake to respect the right of the Malaysian public for unimpeded and free access to lawyers at all times.



1 comment:

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